Breast cancer blamed on vitamin D receptor gene; but it's actually caused by a simple nutritional deficiency
Recent headlines have talked about the correlation between vitamin D deficiency and breast cancer, but many of the articles have highlighted a genetic variance that, when present, nearly doubles the risk of breast cancer. This gene is called the vitamin D receptor gene (VDR), and was found to significantly increase the risk of breast cancer among women, as well as result in a more aggressive form of breast cancer for those women who were diagnosed with the disease.
There are really two stories to look at here. First is the realization that vitamin D deficiency is indeed one of the primary causes of breast cancer. The vast majority of Americans and people in western societies are deficient in vitamin D. This can be easily alleviated by taking cod liver oil supplements, or, of course, by getting plenty of natural sunlight on your skin on a regular basis without using sunscreen that would block ultraviolet rays.
The second item here is that a gene does determine the degree to which vitamin D can be received or utilized by the human body. Women who have greater vitamin D sensitivity by being gifted with the correct gene are able to essentially do more with less. In other words, they can get by with less vitamin D in their system because their sensitivity to vitamin D is heightened. Those who lack the gene have less sensitivity to vitamin D, meaning they are, in a sense, vitamin D resistant. This means they would need far more vitamin D in their body in order to avoid vitamin D deficiencies. But the big point in all of this -- which hasn''t been mentioned in any of the press on this study -- is that the gene doesn''t matter if you don''t get enough vitamin D in the first place.
There is a tendency in western medicine to focus on genetic variations as the causes of disease, when in fact, breast cancer is a nutritional disorder, not a genetic disorder. The human body does not have a genetic blueprint that is programmed to give people breast cancer. Yes, there are variations in the sensitivity to vitamin D, but this variation only comes into play when women are deficient in the vitamin in the first place. Once a person has sufficient vitamin D in their system, either through nutritional supplementation or by manufacturing their own vitamin D by getting natural sunlight on their skin, this genetic variation becomes irrelevant. You can avoid breast cancer for your entire life regardless of whether you have this vitamin D receptor gene by making sure you have plenty of vitamin D in your body, and doing that is remarkably simple. It can be done through dietary changes, nutritional supplements, and getting natural sunlight.
When you see articles in the popular press that talk about diseases being caused by genes, look at that news with a high degree of skepticism. Most so-called genetic disorders are actually nutritional disorders that are influenced in a small way by a person''s genetic code. Nearly all of these genetic variations can be easily overcome by pursuing a healthy lifestyle and making choices in your diet and exercise habits that ensure you have all of the nutrients your body needs to fight off disease and maintain a high state of health.
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- It may not only be the lack of vitamin D that increases a woman''s breast cancer risk but also the way in which the body utilises it, say researchers.
- Studies have shown vitamin D protects against breast cancer and a lack may contribute to the disease.
- Now scientists have found women with certain versions of a gene involved in the vitamin''s breakdown have a nearly twofold greater risk of breast cancer.
- Dr Michelle Guy and her team, funded by Breast Cancer Campaign and World Cancer Research Fund, looked at the vitamin D receptor which controls the action of vitamin D in the body.
- Women with these versions may also have a more aggressive form of the disease if the cancer spreads, the researchers believe.
- They said the findings might provide a new way of helping to predict women''s risk of developing breast cancer or of it spreading by looking at the different versions of the vitamin D receptor gene.
- Pamela Goldberg, chief executive of Breast Cancer Campaign said: "This research could provide a real step forward in the future of treatment for breast cancer, which will be in risk assessment and drug regimes tailored to the individual patient.
- "For patients with breast cancer the development of a test to determine how the disease will progress could provide real benefits by improving the way in which their disease is treated and managed."
- Antonia Bunnin, Director of Policy and Campaigns at Breakthrough Breast Cancer, said: "Further research is needed before any firm conclusions about the role of vitamin D in breast cancer prevention can be established."
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About the Author: Author Mike Adams is a holistic nutritionist with over 4,000 hours of study on nutrition, wellness, food toxicology and the true causes of disease and health. He is well versed on nutritional and lifestyle therapies for weight loss and disease prevention / reversal. View Adams'' health statistics showing LDL cholesterol of 67 and outstanding blood chemistry. Adams uses no prescription drugs whatsoever and relies exclusively on natural health, nutrition and exercise to achieve optimum health. Adams'' books include the Seven Laws of Nutrition, The Five Soft Drink Monsters and Superfoods For Optimum Health. In his spare time, Adams engages in pilates, cycling, strength training, gymnastics and comedy improv training. In the technology industry, Adams is president and CEO of a well known email marketing software company.
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